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DOJ indicts 12 Russian intelligence officials for 2016 DNC hacking

Special Counsel Robert Mueller's office has indicted 12 Russian intelligence officers in relation to the hacking of the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton's campaign emails in 2016. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein said that the Russians intended to "interfere" in the election. One Russian military officer was also accused of attempting to hack U.S. election systems.

Some 20,000 emails were stolen using "spearfishing" techniques and released via hackers Guccifer 2.0 and DCLeaks. "The conspirators communicated with several Americans," Rosenstein said, adding that there was "no indication" the Americans knew they were communicating with Russian agents. The indictment also does not say if the activities affected the final vote count.

One particularly noteworthy portion of the indictment says that in August 2016, "the conspirators, posing as Guccifer 2.0, received a request for stolen documents from a candidate for Congress. The conspirators responded using the Guccifer 2.0 persona and sent the candidate stolen documents related to the candidate's opponent."

The announcement comes just days before President Trump's scheduled meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Both leaders have repeatedly denied that the Kremlin meddled in the election.